Hong Kong Med J 1997;3:377-80 | Number 4, December 1997
The accuracy of references in the Hong Kong Medical Journal
WD Ngan Kee, VJ Roach, TK Lau
Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, Shatin, Hong Kong
We have reviewed the reference citations in volume 1 (1995) and volume 2 (1996) of the Hong Kong Medical Journal to determine their accuracy. One hundred references were randomly selected from each volume. After excluding references not from indexed journals, all citations were examined in detail by dividing them into six component elements and comparing them with the original. We found that 61% of references in volume 1 and 51% of references in volume 2 contained inaccuracies, giving an overall error rate of 56%. Thirty-eight percent of references contained errors in one element, 16% contained errors in two elements, and 2% contained errors in three or more elements. The most common errors were those of the title or authors' names. The rate of citation errors in the Hong Kong Medical Journal is at the high end of the range compared with other medical journals. Contributors to this journal need to take more care in checking their references before publication.
Key words: Bibliography; Documentation; Periodicals; Publishing
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